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Kent believes Rangers no longer fear top sides in Europe

Ryan Kent believes Rangers have made massive strides since last season and no longer have any fear against top European sides.

Rangers host Porto buoyed by an impressive display in a 1-1 draw in Portugal two weeks ago.

Steven Gerrard’s side finished third in their Europa League group last season and are looking to go at least one better this term.

Kent felt they grew in confidence during that game in Porto and he feels they can build on recent performances.

The former Liverpool winger said: “I think the performances have improved massively on last season.

“Going into this season the squad has improved all around, there are players in every position now that can step up and do a good job whether you are in the starting 11 or not, especially recently the performances have been excellent all around the pitch.

“We have improved probably both mentally and – no discredit to the players who were here last season – the quality as well. There’s a lot more confidence, the hunger is there, and just belief that we can achieve something this season.

“I think the key thing is not coming up against teams and fearing them prior to the game and in the game. Whoever steps on to the pitch has got to deliver.”

Rangers have four points from their opening three matches, one less than at this stage last season.

But Gerrard is optimistic they can eclipse the six-point total they finished with, especially with two home games remaining.

“Throughout the whole group campaign, it’s normal that you are going to need a little bit of luck but I think we need to find that level of consistency that’s needed to finish in the top two,” he said.

“Winning your home games gives you a fantastic chance. This is the second one we have had. If we win the game it puts us in a fantastic position with two games to go.

“Last year it felt as if we were grinding a little bit more and trying to hang on in certain games.

“I believe personnel-wise we are in much better shape than we were 12 months ago. I’m in a position now where it’s difficult to pick an 11 and when I do actually make my mind up, I know I’m going to have good players behind me if and when I need to change the game. I don’t think I had that luxury last year.”